Feeding a festival: what it takes to feed all the workers, volunteers at the Hangout

GULF SHORES, Ala. (WALA) – With the festival now hosting 40,000 attendees, Hangout Music Festival organizers have a lot of staff and volunteers to take care of and that means working out a number of logistics as far as figuring out food.

“We are building a city and we have to make sure that the people who are building the city have the creature comforts and food is one of those big creature comforts,” Brad Cohen, director of operations, said.

And that brings them to the staff catering tent three times a day. Cohen told Fox10 News that at their peak, around a thousand people will flock in and out to refuel before getting back at it.

“It’s important that the people who are working hard are nourished and feel appreciated and food is one way to do both of those things,” Cohen said.

The menu features a variety of fresh dishes for breakfast, lunch and dinner. As for the dining area, crate paper table cloths and buckets of crayons give the workers a moment of spontaneous creativity before getting back to the grind.

“After the meal period’s over, we go through and cut out the artwork and hang the artwork and they’re coming back the next meal period to see if their artwork made the cut and is hanging on the wall,” Cohen said.

As for navigating the streets around the festival, starting Wednesday morning, East First and Second Avenues will be converted to one-way streets. Currently, Highway 59 south of First Avenue is closed to all traffic.

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